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Evelyn B. Randall Hanrahan papers

Identifier: MS 3018


This collection contains the letters and papers of Evelyn B. Randall Hanrahan, who was an early women's rights advocate and social worker. This collection consists mainly of personal and family correspondence, the most prominent being incoming letters during World War I. These letters discuss life in Europe and military camps, troop movements, and the personal experiences of Evelyn's friends and family. The collection also contains papers related to her husband's treatment and untimely death from tuberculosis.


  • 1896-1975

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

The reproduction of materials in this collection may be subject to copyright restrictions. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine and satisfy copyright clearances or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information visit the MCHC’s Rights and Permissions page.

Biographical / Historical

Evelyn Barton Randall was born in 1890 to prominent Baltimoreans Blanchard Randall and his wife Susan Katherine Brune. Evelyn attended St. Timothy’s School then Bryn Mawr College from 1913-1914. She trained in social work at Johns Hopkins Hospital during World War I, before engaging in an active career in social work and reform. In 1923 she married Dr. Edward Hanrahan, a physician at Johns Hopkins University Hospital. From 1950 to 1952 Dr. Hanrahan underwent treatment for tuberculosis and succumbed on October 2, 1952. Mrs. Evelyn B. Randall Hanrahan died July 4, 1978.

Chronology – Social Work and Career

-1919: Earned certification as a psychiatric social worker

-1929: Family Welfare Association caseworker

-1932: Investigator for Maryland Welfare Board and Federal Government

-1933-1942: Maryland League for Crippled Children, Salvation Army, Bureau of Homeless and Transient Men and Executive Director of the Junior League’s Volunteer Placement Bureau

-1942: Helped organize Mid-Atlantic Office of Civilian Defense and Red Cross Case Worker Volunteer

-1945: Founded domestic and medical employment service agency

Other AffiliationsOther

-Girl Scout Council

-Secretary, Maryland Conference of Social Welfare

-Parole Board

-Criminal Justice Commission

-Mount Vernon Club

-Helped establish first Birth Control Clinic, forerunner of Planned Parenthood


3.5 Linear Feet (7 boxes)

Language of Materials



The Evelyn B. Randall papers is comprised of five series: Series I) Randall Family Correspondence; Series II) World War One Correspondence; Series III) General Correspondence; Series IV) Dr. Edward Hanrahan Papers; and Series V) Postcards and Photographs.

Series I: Randall Family Correspondence, 1898–1965 (Box 1, 10 folders) This series includes correspondence from members of the Randall and Hanrahan families of multiple generations. Topics include travel, world events, and family topics.

Series II: World War One Correspondence, 1914-1922 (Boxes 1-3, 29 folders) This series includes letters received by Evelyn B. Randall from various friends, associates, and suitors serving in various locations across the United States and Europe during World War I. Topics include traveling through Europe, troop movements, daily life at army camps, general observations about the war, family business, and personal feelings.

Series III: General Correspondence, 1935-1975 (Boxes 4-6) General correspondence from friends and associates received by Evelyn B. Randall and Dr. Edward Hanrahan. Topics include family business, courtesy and thank you letters, invitations, travel, and personal feelings.

Series IV: Edward Hanrahan Papers, 1937-1952 (Box 6) This series includes correspondence to Dr. Edward Hanrahan and documents related to Dr. Edward Hanrahan’s treatment for tuberculosis, including physician letters, a Pneumoperifoneum Record journal, and other business related correspondence. A large portion consists of sympathy letters, donations made in his name, acknowledgments and cards as well as lists, presumably made by Evelyn, of flowers and phone calls received following his passing. Negatives of leprosy, undated, are also included here.

Series V: Postcards and Photographs (Box 7, 2 volumes) Scrapbook I contains photographs circa 1911-1912 from the Philippines, Japan, and Europe. Most images include views of building exteriors and interiors, streetscapes, and local people. The photographs were most likely taken during Elizabeth Randall’s travels to Manila in 1911. Most images are unidentified but some have identification written in pencil on the dark backing paper identifying family members. Scrapbook II contains a large collection of postcards, mostly from Germany and other countries in Europe.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Mrs. Susan Brune Randall Greenlee White, granddaughter of Evelyn B. Randall Hanrahan, and her husband Frank Ellison White, Jr in 1999.

Related Materials

MS 2004, Brune-Randall family papers, 1782-1972

MS 2816, Philpot-Randall family papers, 1726-1936

MS 2824, Randall-Brune-Philpot family papers, 1760-1983

Scope and Contents

The papers of Evelyn B. Randall Hanrahan range from 1898 – 1975. The bulk of materials consist primarily of personal correspondence received by Evelyn B. Randall during World War I, mainly from 1917 to 1919. Letters were received from family, friends, acquaintances and suitors, including C. E. Ellicott, Jr., Lt. Robert Gustafson, John L. Dorsey, Lt. C. A. Waters (Buck), Donald Thompson, a friend of the family “Jack” at Princeton, Edward Hanrahan, and others. During the winter of 1917-1918 Evelyn, her mother Susan, and sister Elizabeth stayed in Anniston, Alabama to be near their brother, Alexander, who was serving in the Army and stationed there. Letters sent to Evelyn in Anniston are included. Many letters discuss personal and family business, observations about the war, life in Europe and military camps, and personal emotions. A smaller amount of correspondence from 1919 through 1975 follows and includes letters from family and friends, usually discussing travel, vacations, and family business.

Papers related to Dr. Edward Hanrahan and his treatment and ultimate death from tuberculosis in 1952 follow and include a large amount of sympathy letters and cards. Also included are sympathy letters related to the deaths of other family members, early family correspondence from Blanchard Randall to his wife Susan and children (including Evelyn), letters relating to Julie Hanrahan Greenlee, and letters between other family members, including Emily Randall, Frederick Randall, and Elizabeth (Bessie) Randall (Mrs. Harry R. Slack). Two postcard and photo albums (probably originally belonging to Elizabeth Randall) conclude the collection.

The Randall family social position, coupled with their generous activities in social work and philanthropy, allowed the family the ability to travel and to make many social contacts. Although papers related to Evelyn’s official business and social work activities are not found here, the collection provides a glimpse of the life of upper-class women in early twentieth century social work. The correspondence contained in this collection reflects the extent to which Evelyn and her husband were a part of Baltimore society and the Johns Hopkins medical community. The correspondence and materials related to Dr. Edward Hanrahan’s death, which greatly affected Evelyn as evidenced by the amount of correspondence she retained, reveal much about their relationship and personalities. Letters between family members and friends demonstrate a close knit, loving, and active family.

Guide to the Evelyn B. Randall Hanrahan papers
Under Revision
Jaime M. Jackson
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Revision Statements

  • 2019-08-29: Manually entered into ArchivesSpace by Sandra Glascock

Repository Details

Part of the H. Furlong Baldwin Library Repository

H. Furlong Baldwin Library
Maryland Center for History and Culture
610 Park Avenue
Baltimore MD 21201 United States